tv Full Court Press Current May 31, 2012 3:00am-6:00am PDT
>> announcer: broadcasting across the nation on your radio and on current tv, this is the "bill press show." >> bill: $1 billion. that's what republican super pacs are going to spend this year trying to defeat president obama. $370 million of it from the koch brothers alone. the obama hate machine rolls on. hello, everybody. happy last day of may. it is thursday may 31. this is the "full court press." i'm bill press liberal and proud of it. good to have you with us as we tackle the big stories of the day here from our nation's capital where you'll find us right here on capitol hill, just down the street from the united states capitol building. six blocks from the capitol. six metro stops from the white
house. we've got it covered, bring you the news here from washington, around the country around the globe and most importantly give you a chance to sound off on the issues of the day. let us know what it means to you, what your experiences have been, what you think about it all by giving us a call at 1-866-55-press. good to see you today. we've got lots to talk about. continuing, worsening situation in syria where more and more people including u.s. ambassador suzanne rice, ambassador to the u.n. says it looks like military intervention may end up being the only way we go with some regional conflict over there. we have continued gridlock in washington, d.c. but at the white house, president obama will be welcoming former president george w. bush and former first lady lora bush to the white house today for the official unveiling of their portraits that will hang somewhere in the white house basement i hope.
so wherever it is happening we've got it covered. good to see you today. our team is almost all here today. peter ogborn. >> hi, there. >> i'm here. >> bill: dan henning has a few days off. he's actually on a beer run. >> yeah. >> bill: he's gone to germany. who else would go on vacation to germany? taking a few days off. >> relax. >> bill: germany? >> maybe he'll stay there and love it so much. >> bill: i would rather go to siberia, i think. or greenland, i don't know. or the north pole. dan's off to germany for a few days. who better to fill in than stevie lee webb. nice to have you with us. >> hi, bill. thanks for having me. >> bill: be on your good behavior. >> always. >> you ask who better than stevie lee webb to fill in. i can think of a few. sadly, they weren't available.
>> bill: cyprian bowlding, videographer on the job as well this morning. i want you to know before we get started, this is the headline i've been waiting for my entire adult life. on the front page of "the new york times" this morning i want you to know, the headline. for some, exercise may increase heart risks. there it is! i told you exercising was not good for you! i told you! >> come on! >> bill: every time you turn around, scientists are finding something that's not good for you, right? >> exercise is good for you. >> bill: up to 10% of people who exercise actually ended up having greater risk of heart problems because of increased blood pressure and levels of insulin, hdl cholesterol or triglycerides so there you go.
i'm not saying don't exercise. i'm just saying could make it worse for you. that's all. just want you to know. >> that's terrifying. >> bill: you got the doctor on your side when you say i think i'll just watch it. >> just eat right -- maybe don't exercise. maybe grab some glazed doughnuts and watch television. >> have you tried cigarettes? they're supposed to be really good. >> that's the next headline. >> bill: best news i've heard since they said that red wine is good for you. >> just wait. >> bill: if you wait long enough -- >> you can custom build a healthy lifestyle. >> bill: above that is the article that new york city is planning a ban on big sizes of sugary drinks. you can have up to 16 ounces of a coke but nothing bigger than that. >> oh, wow. >> bill: not in bottle form or when you go to the big gulp which has gotta be more than 16
ounces. >> big gulp is 44? 42? >> bill: can't sell them in new york city, at least pretty soon you won't be able to. you know, it is getting tough out there, right? all right. that's just -- that's just the sample of what we've got to talk about this morning. we've got a lot of help doing it. congressman from minnesota keith will be here in studio with us as well as dade shuster -- david shuster, our colleague from current tv, my former colleague from msnbc as well. and joe rome from the center for american progress talking about climate warming with the beginning of hurricane season tomorrow. but first... >> this is the "full court press." >> bill: peter with the "full court press." >> he
we have a big, big hour and the i.q. will go way up. how are you ever going to solve the problem if you don't look at all of the pieces? >>tv and radio talk show host stephanie miller rounds out current's morning news block. >>you're welcome current tv audience for the visual candy. >>sharp tongue, quick whit and above all, politically direct. >>you just think there is no low they won't go to. oh, no. if al gore's watching today...
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jennifer granholm is politically direct on current tv. >>the dominoes are starting to fall. (vo) granholm is live in the war room. >> what should women be doing? >> electing women to office. (vo) she's a political trailblazer. >>republicans of course didn't let facts get in the way of >>do it, for america.
>> announcer: on your radio and on current tv, this is the "bill press show." >> bill: happy thursday morning, may 31. 33 minutes after the hour. this is the "full court press" here on current tv, on your local progressive talk radio station. and on x.m. sirius this hour only. brought to you today by the international brotherhood of teamsters. we all live better thanks to the good work of the men and women of the teamsters union underú president jim hoffa. you can find out more about their good work at their web site teamster.org. we'll get back to your calls about voter suppression attempts to suppress the vote on the part of republican governors in at least 25 to 30 states around the country. we'll take your calls at
1-866-55-press. eric holder saying this is a threat to our democracy. indeed it is. why aren't more people concerned about it? but we wanted to take a couple of minutes here to talk about something else we might be concerned about. that is the beginning of hurricane season tomorrow june 1st. joining us, good friend of the program, senior fellow at the center for american progress, joe rome. hey, joe, good morning. >> thanks for having me bill. >> i want to begin if i can with craig fugafe the director of fema appeared in the white house briefing room with jay carney. i would like you to listen to a question. >> it seems like there is a lot more tornado activity in a lot more places. do you see see more activity and do you attribute any of that to global warming? >> i'm not a meteorologist and
i'm not a climate scientist and hurricanes are cyclic. i do know history. if you look at history and you look at hurricane activity, there are periods of increased and decreased activity that occurs over decades. >> bill: joe, he went on to say that even back in the 1800s, you can see periods of heavy hurricane activity then it would decrease for a decade and then it would build up again and he, at least, was not willing to say that with the increased hurricane activity today there's any connection to global warming. what do you say? >> well, there's no question that there are these short-term cycles that affect hurricanes. that makes it, you know, hard for people to see the deeper patterns, particularly because we've only warmed, you know about a degree fahrenheit in the past 50 years. so we're only now as james hanson said, trying to get above
the noise of the cyclical weather and seeing events that are so extreme that we haven't seen them before. and hurricanes are relatively rare events. you know, emmanuel is the mit expert on hurricanes. i've interviewed him many times. he certainly believes that global warming is making hurricanes stronger. there is another key point and this is something that another climate scientist kevin makes. when the planet warms up, you get more heat -- puts more water vapor into the atmosphere. and so big storms sweep up that water vapor and dump it down and that's why you see more intense deluges and that's why, for instance hurricane irene which was not a very strong hurricane, it was basically a category one
but it was the most destructive category one hurricane in history. >> bill: that was where we had all of the flooding. >> correct. it moves slowly up the coast and it dumps staggering amounts of water including in my hometown, middletown, new york, the most destructive storm ever to hit. it did de station in parts of new jersey. it did devastation in parts of vermont. and so there's no question that global warming is making these hurricanes more destructive. the good analogy people are using is the baseball player on steroids. you can't say that any one home run was due to steroids. but the home runs get longer and you get these -- you get 70 home runs in one year. and so that's what we're seeing with the global warming. it is like the weather system is on steroids. and i would make another point about irene...
hurricanes require a certain minimum temperature of water. >> bill: right. >> clearly, when all the oceans are warming up, the hurricanes can go further up the coast as hurricanes. than they did before. i think that's kind of obvious. >> bill: we saw places like in vermont hit by hurricanes that have never been -- last season that have never been hit by hurricanes before. >> that's right. indeed, a few years ago, we had a hurricane in the south atlantic which had not -- at least in our records occurred before. there was a hurricane that hit europe, you know. they normally don't get all the way over to the eastern atlantic. so yeah, we are definitely you know, going to see hurricanes, i think, last longer. we're going to see hurricane seasons are probably going to be longer. just like the tornado seasons started earlier. >> bill: oh, yeah. >> because in part because of such the warm winter and there
was no snow. and of course, the snow on the ground, when the wind blows over the snow on the ground, it cools the whole -- you know, land around it down when there's no snow on the ground, you get the earlier, warmer conditions that allow the early tornado seasons. >> bill: looking ahead for this season, can we expect particularly busy season in 2012? >> the prediction is that this is not going to be a busy season. now, we don't know for certain because we did have beryl, tropical storm beryl was the second-named storm and it is the earliest second-named storm we've had since they officially started naming storms 50 or 60 years ago. we're coming out of what's called the la nina weather condition and -- which has to do
with cooler water off the pacific coast and the regional patterns that it affects including making droughts in places like texas worse. it looks like there is a 50/50 chance we'll actually go to an el nino. el ninos tend not to be associated with strong hurricane seasons. so it is very hard to predict and it is also worth noting that something like half of all of the hurricane damage done to this country were done by five or six storms. so you know, the coincidence of the strong hurricanes -- then it has to make landfall and it has to make landfall in a place where a lot of people and property are. so those events are, you know, still so infrequent that it is going to take awhile, i think before it is very obvious that hurricanes de station is being driven -- devastation is being
driven up by global warming. >> bill: one of the points that fugate made yesterday there are two questions. how many hurricanes we can expect and how many of them will make landfall. and there's no way of predicting the second part of it, right? and if they don't make landfall then obviously the property damage is minimal. if at all. >> no, that's absolutely the case. he should have said there was a third factor which is the probability that a hurricane will be a major hurricane a category three four and five. and particularly when it makes landfall because the most destructive hurricanes are the ones that are -- at landfall or right before landfall because most of the damage is done during storm surges. the scientific literature makes clear we do expect to see more category three, four and five and the point i've made on the
blog before on think progress is that as the -- particularly as the gulf of mexico warms up, all of the most devastating storms in the gulf of mexico have gone over what are called eddie currents. now, eddy currents are pools of deep, warm water that spin off the gulf stream as it comes around the yucatan peninsula and loops around cuba and goes between puerto rico and florida. and the thing to realize is that there are two important temperature factors when it comes to hurricanes. one is you don't get hurricanes that the water is below 86 degrees fahrenheit. the second is that hurricanes are self--limiting in that they churn up deeper, colder water so they don't keep spinning up. the hurricanes that have spun up quickly to category three, four, five, passed over a body of deep warm water, an eddy
current, that is what happened to katrina. that is what happened to gustav. whenever you read that a hurricane flipped from a 2 to a 4 or a 3 to a 5 is because it passed over deep, warm water. as the gulf gets warmer, you're going to see i think the more intense hurricanes and the other key point is as the water gets warmer near the coast you won't get what happened with katrina because katrina turns from a 4 down to like a 3 to a 2 when it hit landfall. and that avoided some of the worst at landfall but because it was a 4 before landfall, it built up that 20-foot storm surge which destroyed my brother's home. he lived in mississippi. a mile inland, he had 20 feet of water in his house. >> bill: joe, so good of you to get up early for us this morning. appreciate your good work and you joining us as on as you do. you can follow joe romm at
thinkprogress.org and follow him at twitter at climate progress. hurricane season, here we go. ready to go. be prepared! starting tomorrow. thanks, joe romm. >> thank you, bill. >> bill: we will get back to voter suppression. hurricane of a different sort here and what's happening in state after state after state especially down in the state of florida. look, the truth of it is if you're a democrat, particularly if you're latino or african-american, republican governors don't want you to be able to vote and they'll make it as difficult as they can for you to vote. street. >>the leadership of high finance just doesn't get it. >>(narrator) the former governor of new york, eliot spitzer is on current tv. >>somebody somewhere can listen, record, track, gather this data. >>arrangements were made. >>(narrator) independent
>> announcer: heard around the country and seen on current tv this is the "bill press show." >> bill: yeah, so you're 91 years old, you live in florida. you've been registered to vote in florida since 1991. you voted in every election since. you just get a letter from governor -- from the secretary of state saying you are not a citizen. but you're registered to vote. you gotta do something within 30 days or you lose your right to vote. you know what most people are going to do in that case? probably say to hell with it. i'm not going to vote. renaldo is in chicago. good morning. >> caller: good morning. >> bill: what's up? >> caller: i have to say that i'm a former democrat. i disagree. i'm also a hispanic-american. and i believe what i do for a living here, i drive a truck. it is mandatory that i take urine tests, it is mandatory i have some form of i.d. on me.
i don't see how going to vote -- i tell you why i'm a former democrat. the way your beloved president is running this election and the attorney general and the former speaker of the house nancy pelosi is why i steered away from the democratic party. >> bill: you know what i have to say to you renaldo? good-bye, good riddance. hi linda. what's up. >> caller: some of the crazies that call. >> bill: i know. i don't want to waste time with them. if he's a former democrat we don't need him. >> caller: exactly. >> bill: you know what? i have to say something else. that guy has been a republican all of his life. we get these phonies that call, they call every progressive talk radio station and they always start out with i used to be a democrat. bull -- i won't say the rest of it. >> caller: something about driving a truck which means he has rush on 24/7.
anyway, my comment would be this. we have so much of this tea party going on. where are the tea party people about voter suppression? they're supposed to be all about the constitution and all about doing what's right and following the laws. where are they at during the voter suppression issue? i think we should call them out. >> bill: you know, that's a great plan. >> caller: it is time to call them out. every newspaper, every person in the country should be saying hey, where's the tea party people now? >> bill: linda, you know what? that is such an excellent point. let me tell you something else. you're right. they say they stand for the constitution. you know, the heart of the constitution, right is our right to vote. they will -- here's what they would probably tell you. we can't -- we have to do something because all of this massive voter fraud in this country, that's total bs. i saw last night, i was doing some research on this. in the state of maine where they've had the ability to register to vote -- you can
register to vote on election day, right? when you go in. if you're not already registered. >> caller: right. >> bill: in 40 years, there have been three case of voter fraud. >> caller: it is smoke screens is all it is. maybe the next step, bill is we're going to have to dip our finger in purple ink. that's the next step. >> bill: all right linda. thank you. lois out in chicago. hi lois. good morning. >> caller: good morning. how are you? >> bill: i'm good. thank you. what do you think about this? >> caller: i got so disgusted with television programs not -- the news programs on the stations not telling any news. i gave up listening to them. and fortunately i found wcpt and now i've found current television and now i've found ed schultz. it is crazy. >> bill: and bill press right? >> caller: and bill press and tom hartman and stephanie.
it has made a big difference. whenever i hear anything i forward it via e-mail to my friends to make sure they stay informed. >> bill: good for you. >> caller: i ask people to take somebody else to the polls. people don't realize how bad things really are. >> bill: right. you say about the news programs. these news programs, all of them should have been talking about this effort to suppress the vote. they should have started last year when all of this started right, and still today and this has been going on for over a year, nobody is talking about it. >> caller: i found out about it because i listen to progressive radio talk. >> bill: lois, we're there for you. i'm so glad you're there for us. tell all of your friends. that's what we need to hear. seriously, if there were more progressive voice out there, more opportunities for progressive voices out there, that's what is so great about wcpt and other progressive stations around the country and that's what's so great about
current tv. let me tell you current tv, they make no bones about it. they are all progressive, all the time. all the way from the my show in the morning until when jennifer granholm says good night for everybody and eliot spitzer and cenk uygur, stephanie miller that's what we're there for. and to speak truth to power. and today's conversation about these voter suppression laws just proves how important it is that we are all there to let you know what's going on and how they're trying to undermine our democracy. we can't let them get away with it.
>> announcer: taking your e-mails on any topic at any time, this is the "bill press show." live on your radio and current tv. >> bill: david shuster in studio with us as a "friend of bill" for the next hour. then we'll go out to wisconsin and check on the recall as well. love hearing from you on twitter, on facebook and via e-mail. charlie says hey bill, in your parting shot yesterday you offered romney advice about palling around with trump stating it will do him no good. stop this! you should be praising romney for doing this and advising him to include tom delay and other less reputable republicans in his entourage.
>> morgan wants to know hey, bill says it seems to me our president's decision on gay rights is not a gay rights issue at all but an equal rights issue. and that is what should be stressed if any discussion arises with regard to his bold and courageous action. i agree. will wants to know the republican nominee has taken aid and comfort from and given such to those who do not accept president obama as the legitimate leader of our nation. when will this ever end? how about this from karen glass who advises me when in chicago next weekend, stop at binney's for a beer. here i come! >> announcer: this is the "bill press show."
[ ♪ theme music ♪ ] >> bill: what do you say? hello, everybody. great to see you today. it is thursday, may 31. this is the "full court press." welcome to the program. good to see you today. we've got a lot to talk about of news happening here in our nation's capital, around the country and around the globe. we'll bring it all to you and give you a chance to comment by taking your calls at 1-866-55-press. and you know, there's nothing more sacred in country than the right to vote, right? enjoy it while you can because as we've been talking in the first hour, in some 20 or 30 states around the country republican governors are making it harder and harder for you to vote. starting in the state of florida, harder for you to vote especially if you're a democrat. they don't want you to vote.
hey, we'll get into that and a whole lot more. but first, today's current news update here in los angeles jacki schechner. good morning jacki. >> good morning, bill. good morning, everyone. a new nbc poll out this morning has president obama and mitt romney tied in three key states. iowa, colorado and nevada. the president took all three in 2008 but they went republican in 2004. last week's nbc maris poll took a look at ohio, florida and virginia and showed the president had a narrow lead in all three of those. optimism about the economy is helping the president out in the swing states. a majority of voters believe the president inherit the current economic conditions however voters in colorado and iowa mark up president romney when it comes to who would do better in doinger -- the obama campaign has a new four-minute video out
featuring former state lawmakers talking about mitt romney's governorship. the video talks about taxes and fees, debt and employment. >> massachusetts growth stunk. new jobs were not being created. >> we knew we were losing manufacturing jobs. he never found any solutions to try to figure out how do we keep them? >> by the time that romney left office, we were 47th in the nation in terms of job growth. >> the video also juxtaposes mitt romney in 2002 and 2011 and shows what little difference nine years makes when it comes to his campaign rhetoric. and the romney campaign is countering with an attack of its own going after the president and solyndra. the green energy company that got a $535 million in loan guarantees from the government and then went bankrupt in august of 2011. as you watch the show, you can chat with us live online. go to current.com/billpress. we'll see you there. more after the break.
>> announcer: broadcasting across the nation on your radio and on current tv. this is the brill press show. -- this is the "bill press show." >> bill: $1 billion is what they plan to spend. karl rove and company koch brothers, $1 billion to defeat president obama in 2012. yeah. who said citizens united was not a bad decision? hello, everybody! great to see you today. it is thursday. last day of may, 2012. this is the "full court press" booming out to you live coast-to-coast on current tv and on your local progressive talk radio station. good to have you with us today. we've got lots to talk about. the situation getting worse and worse in syria. president obama here at the white house today will be
welcoming former presidents bush, george h. w. and george w., barbara bush and laura bush, they're unveiling the official white house portraits of president george w. bush and laura bush. that should be an historic event. i will be there and cover it all with you. you know, it is a day of history because david shuster is in studio today. >> historic relic from the past. >> bill: so good to see you david shuster now with take action news. >> an this very radio station in d.c. every saturday noon to 3:00. great to be here. >> bill: we've got lots to talk about. so, dade where do you think they will hang the portrait -- i've been to the white house so many times. right there in the foyer of the white house in the first floor the main floor inside the front door is bill clinton very prominent spot. john f. kennedy is right around the corner. where do you think they're going to put george w. bush?
>> maybe the war room. or the situation room or some sort of emergency crisis room? i would like to think maybe also the dish room in the white house would be a good place given the mess he created. >> there has to be a place where they keep the dumpsters the trash cans in the back. hang it right above there. >> bill: right outside the briefing room. i see that spot all the time. >> hang it right above there. >> bill: that was peter ogborn. >> hello. >> enjoy yourselves. make sure you pick up all of the trash after it's over. >> bill: dan henning has the day off. a couple of days off. he's on a beer run. he's on his way to germany. >> wow, he needed a supply. >> bill: so we've rounded up stevie lee webb to fill in this morning. >> pleasure to be here with you this morning. two hardest working men in show business. >> stevie was telling me there is another radio show that comes out of here, the national
realtors association. i didn't realize they had a show. >> stevie has his hand -- >> finger in many pies. >> what kind of program doing they have on the real estate? >> bill: it sounds like don't miss radio to me. >> you need to lower your mortgage by 1.5 points -- >> bill: and let's not forget our videographer cyprian bowlding. we all give him a wave. so, david, you and i have been -- show business -- >> news business. >> bill: a long time. so has kathie lee gifford. yesterday she is doing a little interview with actor martin short and she and martin have a very touching and moving conversation about martin's marriage. >> you and nancy have got one of the greatest marriages of anybody in show business. how many years now for you guys? >> we are married 36 years.
>> you're still like in love. >> madly in love. >> wow with! why? >> shoot, i'm cute! >> and you make each other laugh. >> yes. >> bill: little awkward because when she comes back out of the break kathy thee gifford explains. >> before we go on martin just told me as he was leaving, kathy, his beautiful precious wife nancy did pass away a year and a half ago of ovarian cancer and i feel so badly. but he said kathi -- >> bill: a year and a half. so how are you and nancy getting along these days? isn't that awkward? >> kathie lee doesn't do her homework. read wikipedia. martin short's wife died a year and a half ago. martin short's canadian and maybe kathie lee has no regard for canadians.
maybe she's canadian. or maybe -- >> bill: maybe wikipedia doesn't go that far? i don't know how to explain it. >> maybe kathie lee doesn't know how to read. the words are too long with too many syllables, sentences are too complex. >> martin short's wife died a year and a half ago. maybe it just said -- >> bill: i blame it on the staff. i blame it on the producer. as always. >> you would. >> of course they have brain surgeons over at that particular show. >> bill: david shuster is a "friend of bill." keith ellison, great congressman from minnesota joining us in the next hour. joe cirincione from the plowing shares fund to talk about what's going on in syria. first, peter ogborn. >> here's what's making news. good news for tomato lovers. the successful sequencing of the tomato genome will lead to tastier varieties within five
years say scientists. they believe the elusive flavor will by then be widely available in supermarkets. writing in the journal "nature," the researchers say the genetic information could reduce the need for% sites. although if you don't like the taste of tomatoes you're out of luck. >> genetically-modified tomatoes. >> bill: what's wrong with tomatoes today? you get a beef steak. >> you know, people grow their own tomatoes because they are relatively easy to grow and they taste better when you grow them at home. the ones you get at the grocery store that taste like cardboard. >> bill: they're square for one thing. >> there are square tomatoes, i guess. they're saying they can make the ones in the store taste better. >> bill: no, never. >> i agree with you. i don't know that that will happen. >> bill: it is not hard to grow a tomato. >> it is not hard to grow a tomato. >> bill: even i can grow tomatoes. >> well, let's not get carried
away. >> charity begins at home but carries a stiff penalty if you live in ohio. a man was cited for littering after the dollar he tried to give a disabled man at a cleveland intersection fell to the ground. so the guy was asking for money. a man tried to hand it to him and it fell. he was busted for littering and fined $344! it could go much higher with court and attorney fees if he decides to fight it. he is pleading not guilty. reckless polluting. >> where is this? >> cleveland, ohio. >> bill: that's what you get for trying to be a nice guy. >> given virginia's traffic laws, it seems like more appropriate for the commonwealth of virginia. who knew that cleveland was like that. >> in the stars, a panel of renowned astrologers predict barack obama will win re-election in november. an astrology conference in new orleans, also forecasts earthquakes, explored the impact of lunar cycles on the united states stocks and how to use planetary charts to find a job.
the highlight of each conference is the presidential prediction and the last conference may 2008, they predicted that barack obama would win over john mccain. so they have a track record. >> bill: the astrologists are always right. >> when i think about getting out the vote, i think it would be i think of ans a strologier. >> bill: you were kind of a little outraged over fox and friends yesterday morning. what is going on? >> just to be clear. i used to work at fox news back upon a time in my misguided youth. yesterday they run this video, supposedly their own fox and friends compilation of president obama's first four years. and it was pretty slickly done. it had scary music and it this things totally out of context. and it seemed like it should be a propaganda film from the 1930s. it becomes clear this is a
campaign ad. this is a vicious campaign ad at the obama campaign. and very quickly, a guy who i respect a lot who i have disagreed with a lot david zure row wick, the television critic for "the baltimore sun," we argue on things. we don't agree on most things. he defended fox. he said any news organization would run this video is rot ton it core. when david, a friend of fox says that this was rotten and this is not a news organization and that the smiling faces over there mask g.o.p. propaganda, you know that you've got a problem. and you know, then fox like a couple hours later said it was just a producer on the morning show. that's ridiculous. >> bill: gretchen carlson introduces this on fox and friends, it happens to be the morning after mitt romney sews up the nomination. just happens to be. they've been working on this for a long time. they held it for a long time. it is four minutes long. you mention the scary music. here's just -- again four
minutes but here's a little clip. gives you the flavor of it, right? >> we are becoming a society that makes poverty more comfortable. >> now we need to pass a rescue plan for the middle class. a plan that will provide every family immediate relief to cope with rising gas prices. >> bill: example here, it is full of untruths and all kinds of graphics. they say like homeless people and food stamps and gas prices they point out. gas prices four years ago were down here and now they're up here. they don't point out that today they're like 30 cents cheaper than they were a year ago. i mean there is four minutes it is all supposedly a look back at the obama record. it is four years of attack, attack, attack attack. no mention of, for example saving the auto industry. no mention of the fact that we're in positive job growth. no mention of muammar gadhafi or
osama bin laden. you can go on and on. anybody would have to admit there are a few good things that have happened unto the obama administration. >> you talk about the controversial stuff like the food stamp allegation. that has been batted down. more people got under food stamps under president bush and the number was high at the end of the bush administration so obviously it is still a little bit high under the obama administration. but it is not difficult finding the facts on this stuff. so it was a willful disregard for the truth. they simply wanted to put out propaganda. it is outrageous. anybody who think that fox news is a legitimate news organization ought to have their head examined. >> bill: my question is then how can fox continue -- of course roger -- roger ails says i knew something about this. all three hosts were praising the producer for all of the tremendous hours of research he put into putting this together. he got that right from the rnc,
right? he got it right from the romney campaign. how can they continue to present themselves as a fox news? >> they can't. it is a charade over there. it is an embarrassing charade. they're a national shame and the fact of the matter is they want to blame this on a silly producer. bill, as you know, you cannot do a four and a half minute spot for television with music and graphics and with clips without at least several people spending a lot of time on this and i guarantee managers over at fox news are so disciplined, you can't just take an editor for two weeks and work in some -- on some mysterious project. managers knew about it. now you're seeing the fox cover-up because they got caught by conservatives who were embarrassed. now they're blaming it on some producer. everybody associated with that everybody on the morning show ought to be fired because they're a freaking shame to america. they have caused more damage to this country than any news organization i think in the last 30 years. >> bill: amen. by the way four minutes -- you
never get four minutes. there could be war breaking out in syria and it would not be four minutes long on the evening news. four minutes is an eternity. >> bill: on network television. >> there was that poll that came out the other week. it seems like every couple of months there is another poll. fox news viewers are less informed than people who don't even watch the news. >> bill: i know. >> they're misinformed. that's all you need to know. you watch fox news, you get misinformed. >> bill: david shuster on fire this morning. so are you. heard about this flap on fox news. 1-866-55-press. donald trump in the news this week. mitt romney wins the nomination. he wants to talk about the economy and all we heard about was donald trump with mitt romney talking about the birther issue. why does mitt romney waste time hanging out with donald trump? >> it feels like one of the things where it is a -- mitt romney knows there may be some far right radical wing nuts who
still don't trust mitt romney. by appearing with donald trump and having donald trump talk about the birther issue that somehow the crazy people go over and support mitt romney. i gotta say one thing, donald trump, we know he is garbage. he is worthless. he represents the west of america's entertainment culture whether it is high profile no substance, he has no idea what he's talking about. here's a good example. he was talking about when he got called on it by wolf blitzer of all people. i want to talk about china. china's unfair practices. if you go down to macy's and you want to buy one of donald trump's signature suits. guess where they're made. they're made in china they're not made in the united states or north america. >> you're not wearing one are you? >> i'm wearing a hickey freeman made here in the united states. there is a flag that says union of needlepoint and industrial textile employees. if anybody wants to know hey how do i know whether my suit is made in the united states, there is a flag inside. not on the outside like they wear at fox news and those silly
pins but on the inside where it matters. donald trump doesn't care. he wants to make the most money possible. he's going to exploit labor practices. that's why he has the signature line of suits made in china. then he has the audacity to go on television and complain about president obama ought to be tougher on china. we need to support the american worker. donald trump could support the american worker by going away. [ laughter ] >> i'm in a mood today. >> bill: i know you are. >> i wonder why. >> bill: david shuster donald trump and fox news. hey, that's enough to make you reach for the phone at 1-866-55-press. the "full court press" will be right back. can you top this? >> announcer: on your radio and on current tv, this is the "bill press show."
it's go time. >>every weeknight cenk uygur calls out the mainstream media. >>the guys in the middle class the guys in the lower end got screwed again. >>i think you know which one we're talking about. the overwhelming majority of the country says"tax the rich, don't go to war." >>just wanted to clarify that.
>> bill: david shuster in studio with us on the "full court press" here on this thursday, may 31. david shuster, you stirred things up with your comments about fox and donald trump. >> did i call them an international shame? i meant to say a damn national shame. >> bill: that was the least of the things you said. here's matt calling from new york. what do you say, matt? >> caller: hi, bill. how you doing? >> bill: how are you?
>> caller: i was going to say what's the difference between oxymoron and a total moron? fox news is an oxymoron. >> bill: it sort of sums it up. >> caller: it is a joke. >> here's the thing that frustrates me is they actually have some pretty good television producers. it is compelling stuff as far as entertainment and the way they produce their segments, it is watchable. the content and the stuff they're saying is nonsense. this is where i think msnbc and cnn and the rest make some mistakes. they actually do produce interesting television if you've got the sound turned down. >> bill: their graphics. very attractive graphics. stuff moving around, the flag up there and everything. >> that's what they always say about evil is if it is a genius, it is really evil. >> bill: beverly is calling
from st. david illinois. >> caller: good morning. how you doing? >> bill: i'm doing great. what's up? >> caller: david shuster, i love you. you're one of the best. >> beverly, i love you right back. >> caller: hey, the reason that mr. mitt romney hangs around with donald trump is because he believes that the president wasn't born in america. i'm tired of all of the commentators saying he's american. yeah, right. as he's winking, nod nod. he doesn't believe the president. he has no respect for the president. >> bill: all right, beverly, thank you. love ya, too. we're out of time. i think she's right. romney doesn't believe in anything. >> romney believes in his own. >> announcer: this is the "bill press show." current tv presents:
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>> announcer: this is the "full court press," the "bill press show" live on your radio and on current tv. >> bill: indeed it is thursday, may 31. hello, everybody. good to see you today. this is the "full court press" on current tv. and your local progressive talk radio station. you can listen. you can watch. the "full court press." david schuster in studio with us as a "friend of bill" and the "bill press show." "full court press" brought to you by labors international union of north america. the good men and women of the labors union building a better america under president terry o'sullivan. that's their web site. check it out at liuna.
liunabuildsamerica.org. we've spent a lot of time talking about the important recall election, all-important recall election next tuesday in wisconsin. democrat tom barrett mayor of milwaukee up against anti-union, anti-working family, anti-american scott walker as far as i'm concerned. how's it going out there? we turn to good friend, elizabeth di novella is culture editor of the progressive magazine. good morning elizabeth. >> good morning, david it is good to be here. >> elizabeth, good morning to you. you know bill, the reason that elizabeth is thinking about me is because -- >> bill: elizabeth didn't say good morning to me. good morning, elizabeth. >> good morning, bill. >> she's a superstar on my weekend radio show. every time we do wisconsin elizabeth is the go-to reporter so i like to say that we're letting you borrow elizabeth this morning because she really belongs to our show.
[ laughter ] we can all fight over elizabeth. she's great. >> bill: let's get on to the calendar and see which show -- good to have you with us this morning, elizabeth. two polls coming out yesterday. one shows scott walker up by seven and the other showed neck and neck between scott walker and tom barrett. what's going on? how do you read it? >> well, i think the race is very, very close. despite all of the money that scott walker has been able to pour into the campaign and despite the millions of dollars that outside interest groups such as the club for growth and americans for prosperity, he's been spending millions of dollars of ads here. scott walker has not been able to really increase his base of support. what the polls also tell us is that both sides are very energized going into the recall race on tuesday. >> bill: is there -- one more debate to go correct? >> yes.
there is a debate tonight. >> bill: ah-ha. yeah. >> elizabeth, how did the first debate go? we were talking off-line, you said a lot of talking points on both sides but that barrett at least seemed to come away the winner in most people's eyes. >> most had barrett as the winner. he put walker on the defensive with all of these issues coming up with the john doe investigation happening in the milwaukee area looking into illegal activity by aides to governor walker and possibly walker. that remains unknown right now. he put the governor on the defensive. the thing about wisconsin right now is that there are very few undecided voters. and so how the debate affects what people think, i think that remains to be seen. ultimately, it is going to come down to folks getting out the vote rather than swaying the few
undecided voters that are out there. >> bill: elizabeth, i was at the white house yesterday at the press briefing. i go every day. i have been concerned for some time that the white house and the democratic national committee are not giving as much attention as they should to what's happening in wisconsin. so i posed a question to jay carney. i want to play it for you and david and then tell you what happened. >> the recall election in wisconsin, tom barrett, the democratic candidate. governor scott walker. has the president endorsed tom barrett? does he plan to? >> you might ask the campaign. i'm not allowed to take the question. not that i'm aware of. >> bill: jay carney says not that i'm aware of. elizabeth, i was surprised at that. i got home and i had an e-mail
from jay carney who said in fact, the president had endorsed tom barrett, that jay carney just didn't know about it. did you know about it elizabeth? >> no. the obama and the democrats in some ways had been pretty m.i.a. in wisconsin especially when you look at -- into all of the money and research that the republican party has poured into wisconsin. but i think that happens for two reasons. >> bill: i still want to probe this a little bit. did you know that president obama -- do people in wisconsin know that president obama has endorsed tom barrett? >> i think many people gave up on waiting for president obama or even vice president joe biden to come to town. there's all of these sort of online petitions happening to even get the dnc or the democrat governor's association to spend more money. wisconsin is part of the
democrat strategy to win in november. look at their five strategies. all include wisconsin and wisconsin has gone democrat in the presidential elections for the last couple of cycles. however, the same poll that we looked at, that we talked about that has walker leading 52-45 also has obama leading so i think that the obama administration is pretty confident about winning wisconsin and i think they are also -- have underestimated how important what's happening here is to the national scene. the conservatives though know how important it is. >> bill: they sure do. >> elizabeth raises a great point. people in wisconsin gave up waiting for biden and obama. if democrats lose this the obama supporters in wisconsin are going to be so demoralized wisconsin is going to be -- i'm going to say it is going to swing things toward the romney side if republicans are able to
win this recall. for the life of me i can't understand -- maybe the president doesn't want to spend money in wisconsin. he wants to save money for himself. fine. why couldn't he have an event? why can't he go to wisconsin and energize people? i stand with the working people with unions and therefore this governor has to be recalled. what's keeping him from doing that? >> bill: i go back to, i think -- maybe not the president but certainly joe biden should have been there when they were originally having the protests at the state capitol protesting the legislation that walker was jamming through the republican senate. so elizabeth, i have to ask you this. on the money advantage, there's no doubt about it. considering this conversation that republicans understand the significance of this. they understand the importance. they have rallied behind scott walker. all of this out-of-state money, the koch brothers, sheldon adelson, the rnc, they know the significance of it. does tom barrett have enough money to at least compete?
on the airwaves? >> to compete. well, you know walker has a 12-1 spending advantage. >> whoa! >> yeah, at this point. i think you're going to see a lot of money being poured into wisconsin this last week. and a lot of that money is going to go to ads. i think that walker definitely has the advantage of grassroots support because so many people who got involved in -- >> bill: you mean barrett. >> i'm sorry. barrett has the people advantage. that's definitely true but money plays this huge role. can he compete? i hope so. i think it is really going to be a tossup. and that's how money -- >> bill: turnout. >> one other thing elizabeth, i want to ask you, the whole issue with the corruption probe the john doe. i read a report yesterday that walker has transferred something like $160,000 from his campaign into his legal defense fund which as i understand wisconsin
law, you're only allowed to do if you're the target of an investigation. any truth to the money transfer? how is that playing? >> yeah, the money transfer did happen. walker can only make the transfer if he gets the okay from the donors. he's not disclosing which donors are giving him that money. there is a lot of talk last night that there is a smoking gun, that there is supposed e-mail that could really be game changer so to speak but it hasn't been released. and the problem is about the john doe investigation is that i mean it really sort of is against all the history of clean government that wisconsin has had the last couple of decades. but for people who support walker, it does not make a difference. it does not make a difference. and again, there are so few undecided voters that again if you look to the poll and polls always have their issues but if you look at the polls, the people who support walker don't think it is politics.
>> bill: elizabeth our guest here with dade shuster. elizabeth with is with the progressive magazine great publication. an historic publication. the voice of the progressive movement in this country for over 100 years. progressive.org. elizabeth, less we forget and last question for you, there are also recall elections for several state senators on the ballot, correct? >> correct. there are four. >> bill: four. okay. and any word on those? >> well right now the state senate is split evenly 16-16. so there is a chance that the democrats could take back two seats, one is in the racine area which flips back and forth. this is another area where you see a lot of out-of-state money being spent in it and again the republican money is overshadowing the money to support the democratic
candidates. so it is another tossup. it is important in order to not have a pure republican majority in both state houses. >> bill: i think it is hugely important. i'm telling you, if we win wisconsin tuesday, i feel much, much, much better about november and obama. if we lose wisconsin tuesday i gotta tell you katie bar the door. elizabeth, whether you're david shuster's guest or my guest, we thank you. >> elizabeth will be our guest on our saturday radio show. elizabeth and i will be talking. bill, you and i will fight later for who gets credit for elizabeth. >> bill: thank you so much for joining us. dade, this fits into the pattern that the republican super pacs, karl rove and company are going to spend $1 billion against obama in this election cycle. let's talk about that when we come back and of course, take your calls about trump about fox, about wisconsin, about money and politics.
talk about syria and a whole lot more with keith ellison and voter suppression efforts around the country as well. david, this billion dollars, it was reported yesterday of the combined -- the different right wing pacts together. $370 million of that from the koch brothers alone i must admit i was ahead of the curve talking about the koch brothers with the "the obama hate machine." $370 million they're going to pump in is more than john mccain raised in 2008. >> yeah. >> bill: what's going on? >> the moment has arrived. for hundreds -- ever since the beginning of our democracy i think there were people who feared the buying of the presidency. we're seeing that happen now. if this money -- >> bill: and the senate and the house. >> it is not just to defeat president obama. the number of favors that mitt romney is going to owe karl rove and the koch brothers and that whole crew when he takes office, if you think that environmental
policy right now is bad under republicans, just wait until mitt romney takes office! if you think that policies are anti-worker right now, just wait until mitt romney takes office! the koch brothers will run this country. whatever they want, they will get in a romney administration and the fact of the matter is there's nothing right now we can do to stop it. that's the law of the land thanks to the supreme court. the money doesn't even have to be disclosed. >> bill: by the way, if you like anton scalia and john roberts, wait until mitt romney makes first appointment. >> i have two suggestions for democrats out there. democrats, as long as this citizens united position stays, democrats need to buy up every local television station and radio station in the country because those are the people who are going to make a fortune out of this. this is like affirmative action for broadcasters. that's why, bill, you will never hear the mainstream media criticize this amount of money because this is the bread and butter of the broadcast. they're making a fortune and it is despicable.
>> bill: regis is calling from mobile, alabama. hi, regis, good morning. >> caller: good morning. how you doing today? >> bill: turn your radio down or tv down and talk to me. >> caller: sorry about that, bill. what i'm saying is i'm so disappointed with the president i don't know what to do with that wisconsin fight. he wouldn't even go there. it is like it don't even exist. he wants those people to sacrifice. just like in 2008. >> bill: regis, i hear your point. just not coming through loud and clear. but david, what do you say? >> he's got an absolute great point. people are disappointed president obama won't go to wisconsin yet the president is asking activist all over the country to work for him and do
all of this hard work in the fall. here's the problem president will have. if the democrats lose wisconsin then the president will go to wisconsin and say i need you to help re-elect me, the people of wisconsin are going to say where were you when we were asking for your help, begging for your help with the recall. the president is missing in action and that is going to put a huge damper on things. >> bill: he endorsed tom barrett when? rick santorum endorsed mitt romney by an e-mail sent out at midnight on sunday night. that got more news than president obama -- if jay carney didn't know it, if i didn't know, if elizabeth dinovella didn't know if, if john nichols didn't know it who the he will, l knew obama had endorsed tom barrett? why keep it a secret? >> the only thing i can say is you still have time. the recall is tuesday. if i were the chief of staff, i would say mr. president, this is the time to show some courage. we need to throw political caution to the wind.
so what if we get blamed for a loss in wisconsin. the fact of the matter is wisconsin will be in play. we'll be in trouble if we lose this recall. you need to go there saturday, sunday, rally with tom barrett. get people fired up. give them a reason to believe in you again. right now in wisconsin, they don't believe in president obama. >> bill: i got an idea. i'm not the trip planner for the white house but the president is going to minneapolis on friday, all right? get out the map! not that far. >> make it is -- make it is surprise visit. right across the line, right? you can do it friday night. you could do it saturday morning. make an appearance with tom barrett. do it! we'll tell you what the president will be up to today when we come back. david, you'll love this. >> announcer: on your radio and on current tv, this is the "bill press show."
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>> announcer: this is the "bill press show," live on your radio and current tv. >> bill: joe cirincione, ploughshares fund. david shuster here. we always tell people what the president's up to today. he's got a pretty busy day. 9:30 this morning, he and the vice president get the daily briefing. at noon, he and the first lady have some friends for lunch. former president george w. bush, former first lady laura bush, former president george h. w. and former first lady barbara
bush and then they're going to unveil the official portrait of a george and laura. >> george h. w. will be the peacemaker in that lunch. president obama's referred to the bush economy and the mess that he inherited. it will be interesting. >> bill: do you think there will be some -- it will be a friendly -- i think this is one of the times that the bush family is good at this kind of stuff. they'll put everything aside. >> bill: so is obama. >> they won't talk about policies. it is great to have you back. they'll be all come chummy. >> bill: there is a ching called the president's club. i'll be down there covering that for you. and hopefully make the press briefing at 11:30 with jay carney. thank you so much. >> amen. >> always great to see you. >> announcer: this is the "bill press show." sam adams! last year we brewed more than one new beer every week. some we'd been experimenting with for years
[ ♪ theme music ♪ ] >> bill: hello everybody. welcome to the "full court press" this thursday morning may 31 2012. great to see you today. thank you so much for joining us. as we give you a roundup of what's happening in our nation's capital. that's where you'll find us on capitol hill, washington, d.c. around the country and around the globe, worsening situation in syria. president obama welcoming former president george w. bush and george h. w. bush, both with their weis at the white house today for lunch and the unveil of the george and laura bush portrait. you think there's too much money in politics? you ain't seen nothing yet. the right-wingers plan to spend
$1 billion in their super pacs to defeat president obama in november. we'll take a look at that and a whole lot more. but first, we can't get started without checking the latest here with our current news update for this thursday morning. jacki schechner. out in los angeles. hello, jacki. >> good morning, bill. good morning everyone. i like being mandatory. escalating violence in syria is weighing heavily on the obama administration. as it works to figure out what kind of intervention may be necessary and when. "the new york times" reporting the president does not want to take any military action throwing the u.s. into more military conflict. the action so far have been including the expelling of the top syrian diplomat and undertaking financial sanctions. mayor romney has been -- romney has been he critical of the response. he has yet to offer up any substantive solutions of his own. secretary of state hillary clinton is in copenhagen. any u.s. military intervention in syria would need international support
especially that of russia. npr reporting today that a 91-year-old world war ii veteran is the latest floridian to get caught up with governor rick scott's efforts to purge voter rolls of the state. his effort targets alleged noncitizens. it includes some 200,000 names. these people are getting letters from county election supervisors saying they have 30 days to prove their citizenship or they'll be ineligible to vote including the 91-year-old world war ii veteran. as we reported yesterday the state officials are using an outdated driver's license database to sift out potential noncitizens. this is how hundreds of actual citizens are getting caught up in the process. hispanic, democratic and independent-minded voters are disproportionately being targeted. democrats say this smells a lot like 2000 when president george w. bush beat al gore by 537 votes. there was some disenfranchisement there. we'll be right back after the break.
>> announcer: this is the "bill press show." >> bill: guess who's coming back to the white house today. former president george w. bush. no, they aren't going to try him for war crimes. they're going to unveil his official portrait. i wonder where they're going to hang that. i've got a few ideas. what do you say? it is thursday, may 31. and thank you for joining us here on the "full court press"! we're coming at you live coast-to-coast from our tv factory, radio factory right here on capitol hill in washington, d.c. we love being so close to the capitol because we get a chance to visit with some of our favorite members of congress and the united states senate.
congressman keith ellison representing the fifth congressional district of minnesota. good friend of the program. congressman, great to see you. thank you for coming back in. >> love being on. >> bill: fellow talk show host. former talk show host. still preaching, just a different pulpit. >> we preach from whatever pulpit microphone, the floor of the congress, you name it. >> bill: the congress is in recess this week right? >> no. we're in business. we took some votes last night. have some today. and may have some tomorrow. we're working on -- we did some homeland security stuff. appropriations bills last night. and i expect we're going to have some other votes late into the evening. >> bill: all right now i've got to talk to you about these efforts that voter suppression which are so, so scary. want to get your take on donald trump. want to get your take on syria briefly and i want to ask you
about jay street. you're quoted in "the new york times" on that article about jay street. we've got a big agenda here with congressman keith ellison. we also have our regular team here today. not all the regular team. peter ogborn flying the 747 this morning. >> far from regular. >> bill: dan henning has a couple of days off. he's not here. stevie lee webb, i don't know where the hell he is. >> getting his coffee. >> bill: our videographer cyprian bowlding doing a great job as always. we'll get right into it. but first peter has the big stories of the day. >> that's right. here's what's making news today. we'll start at the sports desk. the nba playoffs continued last night and the miami heat defeated the boston celtics in overtime 115-111. they take a 2-0 lead in the series. they're cruising to the finals with the san antonio spurs who lead the series with the thunder two games to zero. buzz feed by the way compiled a list of things that have
happened since the spurs lost a game 20 games ago. the last time the spurs lost, the president still hadn't expressed support for gay marriage, newt gingrich was still running for president nicholas sarkozy was still the president of france, so -- it has been awhile since the spurs lost a game. >> bill: bill press was not on current tv. >> there you go. >> how did you leave that one out, man? >> let's turn our attention to another sport. tennis. melanie and other young american women are finding it much tougher in the french open. they were on the court against more experienced opponents. all of them lost including serena williams in the 2009 u.s. open quarter finalists. she was eliminated by 21st seeded sara of italy 6-2 6-3. >> bill: serena williams is
phenomenal. when she lost yesterday, she was not a happy camper. whoa! >> the next big summer blockbuster that's going to be coming out in june 8th is permethia. it won't be considered as classic as alien or blade runner. it provides sticky slithery monster attacks to hit the spot thrill seeking audiences worldwide. it is considered to be a prequel of sorts to the movie alien one of the most beloved trilogies of all-time so we will see when it comes out. june 8th. >> bill: june 8th. too bad. carol is out of town. i got a free weekend. i guess i'll have to go see the dictator instead. >> there you go. >> bill: 10 minutes after the hour. congressman keith ellison, we were talking this morning. i know you've been on top of this. while nobody in the mainstream media seems to be talking about
it. in state after state after state after state, there are efforts to make it more difficult for people particularly african-americans and latinos and poor people to vote in this election. what's going on? >> i would add to that list, bill students, senior citizens and you know, the fact is anyone -- like in my own state of minnesota, on any given day there are about 30,000 people in our state of five million people who either lost or need a license replaced. and so what's going on is that alec, american legislative exchange council -- >> bill: funded by the koch brothers i might add. >> koch brothers sponsored organization, went out and got state legislators to file boilerplate legislation to require that a valid photographic government-issued identification card be required in order to cast a vote. their whole argument is that this is designed to stop fraud.
well, you know there's no voter fraud to speak of unless it is republicans in florida. but the thing is that this is the argument that they've been pushing. it is premised on an assumption in the public which is that hey most people have an i.d. well, that's an incorrect assumption in that i was told yesterday by a very reliable source that as many as 600,000 people in texas don't have a government-issued identification card. in the city of milwaukee, about 78% of african-american men between 18 and 24 do not have a government-issued i.d. that means -- so it is going to hit communities of color, low income communities students, a lot of students aren't allowed to use their student i.d. as valid voting i.d. but in texas you can use your gun-issue permit as a valid form of identification but not a student
i.d. so -- and then there's a lot of ugly cases that have come up. there's dorothy cooper in tennessee. 96 years old. african-american woman couldn't vote in the early part of her life but could after the civil rights movement prevailed. voted in every election when she began voting. and was denied the right to vote even though she had a city of chattanooga police department i.d., that was not valid under the tennessee law. this is not about determining identity. if it were, we would -- that might be reasonable but this is about excluding people. when people who are fitted by this kind of law say this is going to exclude people. the koch brothers and their type say of course it is. that's why we're doing it. >> bill: right. they might as well say we want to get as many democrats off the voter rolls as we can. we were talking earlier about -- you mentioned ways in which they try to suppress the vote. you mentioned the voter i.d., a
central one. they've also cut the early voting time in half. a lot of people, more and more people vote early. as long as they're voting once, it doesn't matter. >> right. >> bill: they have eliminated voting on the sunday before the election which, in a lot of black churches is -- >> souls to the polls. >> bill: it was tradition. exactly. in many other ways. in maine where you used to be able to register to vote on election day and why not? right? encouraging people to vote. they had two lines in maine. one line if you're already registered. up with line if you're not. it has been working like clockwork with three case of voter fraud in 40 years and they did away with it. now voters of maine have reversed that. >> but still. thumbs up to the great people of maine who said we want the same day voter registration. but in minnesota liberal minnesota, you know, the state i
love and live in, there's a big move to have this voter i.d. law passed. it is going to be on the ballot. i tell people this may be the last time you get to vote if you don't vote now! you gotta vote to defeat this thing and we've gotta -- and what we're up against bill, is we're up against assumptions. about voter fraud which really doesn't exist as you pointed out. we're up against assumptions by many people that you know, hey most people have an i.d., don't they? and we've gotta help people understand no, a lot of people don't have i.d.s. a lot of people, older people born at home, here's the interesting thing. the conservatives say well, the i.d. will be presented free. you will be able to get a free i.d. but the documents you need to get the i.d. are not free. by the way this hits women harder because a lot of women who got married and taken on their husband's name don't have i.d. in their new name.
they only have it in their maiden name so if you haven't converted over and switched every document to your husband's name if that's your choice, you might find yourself not voting. this is an ugly -- this is hitting people hard. and there are a lot of people who could be affected. right now, we've gotta get people, if you're in a state that's already passed one of these ghastly laws, we need you to get an i.d. and get it now. if you are in a state like minnesota that's fighting these things by all means, fight it and write a letter to the attorney general telling him to challenge these things. >> bill: we need to have -- get a little cup of water there clear your throat. we need also to have the attorney general and the department of justice get on this now and they better get on it fast because before you know it, we're there. >> click fast. time to enforce the laws, folks. >> bill: on another issue donald trump. >> oh, boy!
the name invokes laughter! >> bill: it does, doesn't it? >> or ridicule. >> what a character. >> bill: why is mitt romney spending so much time with him? >> the etch-a-sketch guy, the etch-a-sketch nominee he's not guided by what he believes in. he's guided on where he think he can get a vote or a buck. either one will do. he's hanging out with donald trump because he think -- because he does want to wink and nod at the birther nation. he doesn't want -- among his nice cocktail party friends, he doesn't want to associate with them. he does want them to think hey, i'm your guy. that's why he's hanging out with donald trump. he wants it both ways. well, that's a story of his life, isn't it? that's the kind of nominee he is. >> bill: totally. the thing about romney, so we've seen when rush limbaugh called sandra a slut and a prostitute a woman calls the president a
trader. romney doesn't say anything until much later. donald comes out with the birther nonsense. i need to get to 50.1%. backbone? >> backbone and mitt romney can only be used in the same sentence if separated by the word "not" or "no" backbone. it goes to the basic issue at hand here. you know, when president obama took office, this country -- we lost about 700,000 jobs that month. unemployment in the very next month went up 7.6%. went up to 8.1% and ended up being at 10%. this economic problem we've been in is bush republican created through and through. and it takes a long time to dig out of it. we've seen job growth increasing. but still, we're not back where we need to be. what is the game? the game is smear tactics
suppress the vote. make democrats lose heart and just quit. and the question is well, people go for the okey-doke. i hope not. >> bill: talking to congressman keith ellison. he's always willing to take your calls at 1-866-55-press. we're jumping around, congressman. not a lot of time and a lot of issues. i want to ask you about this story. for supporters of israel it has been you've gotta get the money. you have to have support. j street has a more -- very -- certainly strongly support israel but they disagree with some of the policies of the israeli government. slogan is pro israel, pro peace. you're one of the members of congress who have been endorsed by them. you happy receive their support. >> i think jeremy is a brilliant man. i'm a huge supporter of j street. i think that you know, the time has come where we needed more
diversity of views. i will say i talked to the apec folks in my district always welcome to my office. but we need -- this is such an important issue that it cannot -- we cannot afford to allow it to be sort of monopolized by one point of view. i think that j street is critically important to expanding the number of options that we can have per -- as we discussed this issue of how to resolve conflict in the holyland. >> bill: they're strongly in support of a two-state solution. >> yep. >> bill: strongly in support of cutting back or stopping the settlements. which disagrees -- which is -- contradictory to what benjamin netanyahu is proposing. what gets me, if you go to israel and you read the press in israel, they're so much more critical of netanyahu than anybody in this country is. >> netanyahu received so much criticism in israel that he needed to go get his own newspaper called "israel today"
paid for by sheldon adelson who is the big gambling magonate. basically, adelson bought him the paper. it is free. >> bill: is that right? >> if there is any problem you don't have to buy it. >> bill: the spare change you had left over, he gave to newt gingrich. congressman keith ellison in studio with us. "full court press" on this thursday, may 31. we always save a seat at the table for you at 1-866-55-press. right back. >> announcer: radio meets television. the "bill press show." now on current tv. jennifer granholm is politically direct on current tv. >>the dominoes are starting to fall. (vo) granholm is live in the war room. >> what should women be doing? >> electing women to office.
>> announcer: heard around the country and seen on current tv this is the "bill press show." >> bill: happy thursday, folks. the last day of may. can you believe it? 2012. may 31. congressman keith ellison, good friend here in the studio with us. and we've got a lot to talk about. we want to take your calls as well. here's joseph calling from right across the river alexandria virginia. hey, joseph, thanks for joining us. >> caller: good morning, bill. good morning congressman. >> bill: good morning. >> caller: what i have to say is quick. i'm is east -- severely disabled veteran in a wheelchair. we need to stop talking and get out here. 60 years ago people in mississippi and alabama were dying to register to vote. it is time we stop crying and whatever paper walls they put
up, we can climb. >> bill: i love that spirit congressman but there are some hurdles they're making it harder to climb those walls, right? the voter suppression areas congressman. >> i would say i agree with what you said about joseph. joseph has a can-do attitude. i think he's right. we need to get people the i.d. they need now. but you know for so many, it is not going to be enough. those barriers are going to suppress the vote. so by all means follow joseph's good example. if you can get an i.d. now get one for sure. bullet if you can't there's -- if you can get one, do it. if you're a citizen, you should be able to vote. the problem is you have basically 50 states that states control voting qualifications. that's why in some states if you're a felon, you can't vote. >> bill: i want to point out quickly like in florida they made it so difficult to conduct voter registration, the league of women voters said we're no
longer going to play in florida. congressman, we have 30 seconds. i have to ask you, military action in syria. more and more voices demanding it. is that the way to go? >> well, i will say we need to create a safe zone which is protected by military. which civilians can go to and get medical treatment and food and get some safety and i think turkey is willing to do it. i'm not advocating aggressive action against syria. i'm saying that innocent civilians need a safe haven. it should be protected. >> bill: the united states troops part of that? >> the united states should be part of that. >> bill: congressman keith ellison, you're welcome any time here. joe cirincione is joining us next. >> announcer: this is the "bill press show." i.q. will go way up.
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>> announcer: heard around the country and seen on current tv this is the "bill press show." >> bill: hey, you bet it is. it is 33 minutes after the hour now here on the "full court press." on thursday, may 31. absolute last day of may. we're brought to you today by aspme, the largest public employee and healthcare worker's union in the entire country. president mcactee and lee saunders have written a new book. a book party tonight here in washington, d.c. i'll be there. representing all of you. you can find out more about the good work at afscme.org. in studio with us with a big
agenda, lots to talk about today, the president of the ploughshares fund, joe cirincione. welcome back. >> my pleasure. >> bill: you're looking good this morning. >> thank you sir. >> bill: you've been here early, you've been here late. we need you today. front page of "the new york times," syria is the issue where we start. they point out that when we went into libya last year, president obama said how libya was different from bosnia. when people were being brutalized in bosnia in the 1990s, it took the international community more than a year to intervene to protect citizens. it only took us 31 days he said at the time. well, joe, it has been -- >> over a year. >> bill: over a year in syria. we have not intervened. people are asking -- not i -- but more and more people are asking why aren't we intervening in syria. should we?
>> we date the rebellion from march 11th when the first protest broke out against the regime. it has been over a year now. i gotta say the case is building for humanitarian intervention. you see it in polls, what people are saying. you certainly see it in some of the obama's opposition. romney's calling for it. for military intervention. >> bill: john mccain and -- >> the three horsemen of the apocalypse. you got gottlieberman -- you've got lieberman, graham and mccain. the secretary of state yesterday in denmark talked about how russia's support for assad was turning this into a civil war and it had to stop. so she's feeling the pressure and tried to in turn pressure russia to end their support for the regime.
the problem is this is not bosnia. it is central to europe's identity and security. it is not libya where you had an opposition that had formed to oppose the government where you had an on-going civil war where a whole section of the country had split off and had declared itself independent of libya. what you have here is protests. you have some scattered armed resistance to the regime. you have certainly terrible, terrible casualties bullet so far about 10,000 dead at the hands of assad. terrible situation but certainly nothing that would qualify as a vital u.s. national security interest and that's why you see the hesitation. >> bill: do we know who the opposition -- if we were to arm the opposition, are they united? do we know who they are? >> bing. that's exactly the problem.
we know some of them. they're a diverse group. it is not like they all share the same values that we have. most of them, of course are opposed to the regime but some also support al-qaeda. some support more extreme sectarian causes. some are prodemocratic but they're scattered. we have army communities that have defected, squads, companies, that have defected. unclear what their political stance is. of course when you're talking about arming the opposition, you have to actually have people arm them so that means the presence of u.s. troops inside syria. >> bill: what do you believe that the options are? i was a little stunned last night watching abc news to hear christian amanpour i think stepping over the line from being a reporter to being a commentator, said that the only options left she said, she said the only options left were either arming the rebels or arming syria. >> i don't think that's true at all. there is a large spectrum of
things you can do to bring increased pressure and to further isolate the regime. you could cut off air traffic for example. you could cut off bank accounts, limit the travel of senior officials. you could do many of the things we're doing for iran. declare the center bank of syria cutoff from the electronic transfer system. >> bill: did we do that yesterday? there was talk about it. >> there was talk about it. none of this has happened. there is a whole lot of things you can do before you have to get to military action. >> a lot of that is aimed at russia to increase russia, this is a pariah regime and they should no longer support it. many people feel once russia pulls the club, you could convince assad to step down. you have to understand the scenario that's desired here is not the complete collapse of the government. you do not want this country falling into chaos. this is a heavily-armed country with sophisticated munitions you don't want to see in the hands of radicals or rebels
surface-to-air missiles, surface to surface missiles probably the largest most sophisticated chemical weapons stockpile remake in the world today. you want that to remain under control. you want to see some sort of transition here, not a government collapse. >> bill: susan rice who is our great ambassador to the united nations is quoted in "the new york times" where i thought it -- maybe realistic maybe pessimistic point of view. she says that it appears likely now with assad ignoring the kofi annan peace proposal, the cease-fire entirely that she says it appears likely to develop into a regional sectarian war. >> yeah. so former secretary general of the u.n. kofi annan had worked out a cease-fire. it is not holding. it is not working. clearly, we have reports of massacres coming from artillery barrages.
>> bill: 100 on sunday. 13 bodies found sunday. but regional sectarian war? that means other countries involved and -- >> yes. all you have to do is look at the map. you see where syria is. syria has about 33 million people. about 75,000 square kilometers. it borders iraq, turkey, lebanon and israel. and you know, this is one of those countries that was drawn up by the british and french colonialists. it is artificial boundaries. we have straight lines that cut right through ethnic populations. kurds are on all sides of the syrian border. there's at least four, five major ethnic groups represented inside syria and they don't necessarily just stay in syria. so once this thing breaks apart it could break up in that way. you hear israeli politicians and military officials talking increasingly about their concerns about a collapse and what it could mean. >> bill: this would be unlike
the war in iraq right? which was contained inside of iraq. unlike the war in afghanistan which was contained in afghanistan. this would be cross borders other countries involved. iran. >> it could get very ugly, very fast which is why you see the u.s. military hesitating about using military force. do you really want the united states air and ground forces involved in this kind of war where you have no idea what's going to happen? it gives a new definition to the phrase unintended consequences. >> bill: let's just bomb them. always an easy answer to send up -- >> you should read walter pincus in "the washington post." he says this is no video game. the president can't press a button and eliminate the slaughter and this would be a messy, uncontrolled, sustained military conflict. >> bill: you know the pressure is building on obama every day. and i hear it at the white house
as part of the briefings. again, yesterday, probably 90% of the questions were about syria. why aren't you doing more? why aren't you arming -- how can you stand by and look the other way while this is happening? that pressure builds. i hope obama does not just do what the loudest voices say. it is a tough one. are the american people ready for another war in the middle east. i don't think so. >> i don't think so either. it is clear the american people have had their fill with wars in the middle east. the iraq war was not what they were told it would be. they're delighted, there is overwhelming support for our withdrawal from iraq. there is support for accelerating the withdrawal from afghanistan. in fact, you're going to see some of the members of the house vote in the next couple of days on accelerating the withdrawal from afghanistan which has majority support in the country. so no, there's no mass public push for intervening in syria.
this is all mainly coming from political forces. >> bill: we will give our viewers and listeners a chance to weigh in on that, too. war with syria or bombing syria or putting boots on the ground or arming the rebels. cries for all -- demands from all of that from political figures. we want to weigh in on that. 1-866-55-press. we'll take your calls when we come back, joe. joe cirincione from the ploughshares fund. ploughshares.org. "the new york times" also reporting this week that there is a kill list of those people that we are targeting with our drones and the man who is making up the final kill list is none other than the president himself. get your thoughts on that when we come back here, thursday, may 31. the "full court press". >> announcer: this is the "bill press show" live on your radio and current tv.
>> announcer: radio meets television. the "bill press show." now on current tv. >> bill: here we go. at 13 minutes before the top of the hour. the "full court press" in studio visiting with us this hour, head of the ploughshares fund, joe cirincione and we are talking about increasing pressure on president obama to take military action. it seems that there are some forces, political forces who leap at the -- any opportunity
to send in the marines, send in the bombers, send in the drones or whatever, joe. it is always -- without thinking almost. particularly as you say, led by the -- what do you call them? the apocalypse. >> the three horsemen of the apocalypse. mccain and lindsey. you see how this unfolds for the president's opponents. they take everything. everything that happens, everything that he does or doesn't do. they try to fit it into this frame that he's weak, naive. he's not standing up for american security. he has secret deals so the fact that he's not willing to start bombing syria now shows that he's weak. and they also want -- we see the romney campaign turning this into their russia frame. so they want the u.s. to pressure russia to take action on this. we should withdraw our ambassador from russia or we should tell putin he'ses to do this or else.
that kind of tough talk that's unrealistic, you can't make russia do something. you have to convince them to do this. >> bill: for the record, right, i mean, a lot of comparison is to libya right or to bosnia. syria is a different animal. even in iraq, we invaded iraq. saddam hussein had this ragtag army and no air force and no navy. syria's got a powerful military. >> yes, it does. and so let's not have any illusions. once you start doing military action in syria, civilians will die. if you want to go into syria you have to take out the air defenses. the air defenses that will require some sustained bombing and civilian casualties so the same pictures you see now on the front page about people -- women holding their dead children, that's going to happen except it is going to be american bombs that have killed them. are you ready for that? >> bill: yes and are the american people ready for that?
i want to take your calls at 1-866-55-press. i want to ask you about earlier in the week, "the new york times" reported that for the use of the drones and targeting suspected terrorists in pakistan, yemen or wherever that the military comes up with -- and the c.i.a. together, a list of people that they -- that are appropriate targets for drone attacks. and that that list goes to the -- they call it the kill list. however many are on it, that list goes to the president of the united states and it is the president himself sitting around with his advisors who says yes to this one, yes to this one yes to this one. is that the proper role for the president of the united states? >> i've never heard a story like this before. i've never heard of the president of the united states being this involved in military activity. now, don't get me wrong. every president says this. one of the greatest burdens of
their office is knowing that they're sending young men and women to their death or ordering the death of others. but this is a very personal detailed level. >> bill: identified by names. >> and the story and why and what the justification is. on the one hand, you comfort it that you have president obama making the decisions and reigning in excess and making sure there is a strong case, that this is an enemy of the united states. this person has to be taken out. on the other hand, we're in a new area here. we're not talking about massive bombing raids. we're talking about individual kills, not by -- and not by assassination teams, not by mosad rangers but by machines. they're going to fly long distances, electronically acquire a signature and go in and kill that target. if obama can do it, well the next president is going to be able to do it. who's that going to be? are you going to trust them with the list and trust them with the
decisions. even more sophisticated machines ten years from now, the drones we have will make these things look like the wright brothers airplanes. >> bill: a different president could delegate that to -- >> head of the c.i.a. >> secretary of defense. wolfowitz could have been making the decisions if this technology was available five, six years ago. >> bill: that's scary. on the drones, one final question. are there any international guidelines regulations, law regarding the use of drones? >> no. this is -- >> bill: we're making it up as we go along. >> make it up as we go along. the rules of combat. >> bill: we assert the right today to fly our drones, equipped with missiles anywhere in the world and launch a strike against people that we believe are a threat to the united states, correct? >> correct. correct. there is an interesting question whether that is an act of war.
whether our flying drones into pakistan, a country we're not at war at we're engaged in hostile activities, using military equipment to bomb targets in pakistan. is that an act of war? >> bill: i don't want to sound un-american but if this country has the right to do that -- >> well, there you go. that's the word that you always gotta remember. we always assume that we control this. what they call this a fallacy of the last move. that we can make the move and there's no response. but other people get to respond. other people get to play the game. what happens when these drones start coming after us? >> bill: oh, my god joe! you scare the hell out of me. these are the issues. >> these are the real issues. if you want to control them, you better start controlling them now while we're still the ones doing it. >> bill: the plough sheriffs fund. joe -- the ploughshares fund. so important to keep on top of them. ploughshares.org is the web site. you can follow joe at cirincione
on twitter. >> thank you, bill. i love your show. enjoyed being on it. >> bill: i'll be back with a quick parting shot. >> announcer: on your radio and on current tv, this is the "bill press show." [ male announcer ] cookies with smooth caramel and chocolate. ♪ ♪ hmm twix. also available in peanut butter.
>> announcer: the parting shot with bill press. this is the "bill press show." >> bill: hey and on this thursday, may 31 a quick parting shot for today. for a long time, we've known fox news is not really a news network. it is propaganda arm of the republican national committee. they proved it yesterday morning on fox and friends with a four minute long so-called news piece
about president obama's record which really was a four-minute anti-obama pro-romney campaign commercial. when it was over, the three hosts of fox and friends praised the video and thanked their producer for his tremendous amount of research. check it out. you can find it online. i have to tell you, enough is enough. i think it is time that the fcc ordered fox news to drop the word news from their title. because as we all know, there is nothing newsy about fox news. pure propaganda. that's my parting shot for today, folks. i'll be down at the white house with the bushes and the obamas today and i'll see you right here tomorrow.